March 26, 2012 Email
Hey hey hey!
I am going to start off by saying what happened yesterday in church. Church was great yesterday. The best and most spiritual part was sacrament meeting, which was fast and testimony meeting because of conference this next week. (by the way, I'm STOOOKKKEEDDD!) I was sitting in sacrament meeting and I was sitting next to Viviana, our 37 year old convert who was confirmed yesterday, and on my other side was Felipe, our 15 year old stud convert who is already impatient to go on his mission. On the bench right in front of me was three of our other converts, Marcelo, Cristian, and Nicolas, with their moms and grandma who were all reactivated since we've been here. Behind me was sitting Felipe's mom, Gladis. As sacrament meeting was starting, I was just filled with happiness and with the spirit just being there with all of these people who I love so much. I glanced at the bishop and he looked at me and I just couldnt get rid of my smile. He smiled big too.
It was finally time for the confirmation of Viviana and she was nervous. She went up nervously and the bishop did the confirmation. It was amazing and the spirit was present. When it was over we went and sat down and Viviana turned to me and said just these words: "Estoy feliz!" (with a huge smile on her face) I felt the spirit so strong right then and I knew that she was literally filled with the Holy Ghost in that moment. She is so great! Earlier in the week, we passed by her house to visit her and talk to her about her confirmation. (she was baptized last Saturday) and she said, "by the way, this week I have felt so good! I had some back pains and stress and stuff, but this week I have felt better." Then she said, "and....I promise you....the moment I felt better was the moment I came out of the water! I swear! right when I came out I felt a lot better." We were like "oh we believe you! and Viviana, we promise you that that feeling will be even stronger when you get comfirmed on Sunday!" The gospel is true. It is simple. All there is to it is FAITH, REPENTANCE, and BAPTISM. Then RECEIVE THE HOLY GHOST, and endure to the end! That's all there is to it. Simple. And it can change EVERYTHING in one's life. It is the difference between being miserable and being happy, or being kinda-happy and completely happy.
Going back to sacament meeting, when it got time for the testimonies, the bishop got up and he mentioned me and how he looked down and saw me smiling surrounded by all of our fruits...all of the inactive members reactivated and all of the converts. He went on to share a super powerful testimony about the restored gospel. It was awesome.
Then.....some really cool things happened. All of the sudden Felipe turned to me and said "what can my testimony be?" I said "whatever you know and feel..normally about Jesus Christ." He said "Can this be my testimony?..(then he bore a mini testimony to me)" I said "of course! that was great!" Then he said, "...uh....no I cant do it!" and he got all nervous. I could tell he wanted to though. He said to me "if you go up, I'll go up" in that second I got right up and went up to the stand and he follwed me. Also, in front of us, Christian (11) wanted to bear his testimony. His cousin Nicolas (12), got right up and bore his testimony as well. Then Cristian followed. All of these young men, let me tell you, bore fantastic testimonies!!! They were so powerfully. Cristian and Felipe were up their shaking, but they wanted to share their testimonies! It was so great! 122 members attended church so it's pretty nerve wracking. Also, Felipe and Nicolas were sustained to receive the Aaronic Priesthood. After church, I was able to participate in giving Felipe the Aaronic priesthood, in the office of a teacher. He is AWESOME! After sacrament meeting Cristian and a few others started crying because Elder Strait is leaving. He will be missed.
My companion gave his last testimony in the ward...Oh yeah, WE GOT TRANSFERS!!! My companion is leaving! He is going to Pitrufquen, the far south of the mission, to the little zone that is the "hard zone of the mission" Yeah right! My companion will go dominate. It will be very sad to leave Elder Strait. We have been together for 4 months now and It's been awesome. I will be staying here with Ëlder Beatty. I think he is from Texas and he is big...not fat big but big big. Just grande in general. And someone else is also coming to my zone..... ELDER MCCONNELL!!!!!!! Finally after a year and a half we will be in the same zone!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am very excited.
Our convert Nicole has been great too, she is the one with two little kids. She has been going to another ward for the last couple weeks, because they moved out of our ward boundaries. She is 100% active and is awesome! Felipe, her little brother, who is 18, who we have been working with for the last few months, told us some great news yesterday...HE'S GOING TO GET BAPTIZED! He is going to be one heck of a missionary too. He has always attended our ward, but now he finally is going to attend where he belongs, which will be great. He is studying in Concepcion in the university, and visits his mom throughout the week and comes to church with us every weekend...but now he is going to start going to institute in Concepcion and he's going to started attending church there. He's going to Santiago in April and he's going to get baptized by his uncle there. They are an amazing family!
This week was amazing. I love you all, sorry I dont have more details about the week, but sacrament meeting this week describes a lot of it, plus it was my favorite part of the week. I love going to church!!!
Tender Mercy- Love. God's love for us. This week I learned a lot about love....I love the people here demasiado (too much) because when I have to leave here I am going to be so sad. Also, I know that miracles are real! In this area, we have had ten people change their lives 100% and start coming to church and live the gospel and get baptized and they have literally left their nets to follow Christ. If that isnt a miracle I dont know what is. Human beings are extremely hard headed and hard hearted these days...but there are those who are prepared for the gospel!
Love you all, Elder Gomez
photos next week. I forgot the camera cord